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Master Plan > Part 1 > 4.8 > 4.8.1

General goals

  • Preserve the character and scale associated with the area’s industrial past
  • Intensify and diversify the area’s activities by fostering the cohabitation of economic and residential activities
  • Reinforce recreational and tourism uses in the Peel Basin area as well as the nautical vocation of the Lachine Canal, by taking advantage of the proximity of Old Montréal, the Old Port and the Central Business District

Planning issues

Griffintown has been an industrial area since the 19th century. At its peak, it was home to factories, metal workshops, breweries, printing plants, shipping companies and other industries. Its industrial decline began in the first half of the 20th century and was hastened by the complete closure of the Lachine Canal in 1970. This decline spurred the loss of a large number of jobs and the demolition of many buildings. As a result, the area now has high development potential, especially since many industrial buildings of heritage interest have been spared from demolition.

Each part of the area has its own character and scale, making revitalization all the more interesting. However, the process must contend with heavy vehicle traffic and industries that generate nuisances, such as noise, pollutants emissions, dust and vibrations.

Over the past 20 years or so, a number of areas adjacent to Griffintown have undergone transformation. The revitalization of Petite Bourgogne along with the enhancement of the Stelco lands, the area around the Seigneurs locks and the Cité Multimédia all serve to increase Griffintown’s potential. In addition, the establishment of the École de technologie supérieure, along with its student residences, is helping to revive the area by bringing residents and workers.

Griffintown could benefit from a more formal connection to the Central Business District. In this regard, Rue Peel, connected to Rue de la Commune, is the preferred corridor, despite its lack of streetscape design and retail continuity.

The redevelopment of the area along the Lachine Canal and its opening to pleasure craft also favour a rise in recreational and tourist activities south of Wellington. However, the combined presence of the elevated portion of the Autoroute Bonaventure and the railway bridge is a major barrier between Griffintown on one side and the Cité Multimédia and Old Montréal on the other, not to mention the major visual impact that this has on the Peel Basin area.